European leaders including David Cameron are holding emergency talks tonight over the escalating violence in Egypt amid fears that the bloodshed could destabilise the entire region.
Western nations issued urgent warnings to citizens against travel to the country and advised those already there to leave. Britain and France have called for a meeting of the UN Security Council to discuss the crisis.
Mr Cameron is discussing the unrest with French President François Hollande, as well as with the European Commission President José Manuel Barroso. Mr Hollande is also speaking to the German Chancellor Angela Merkel as European leaders attempted to reach a common position.
French Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, warned the turmoil could spread to neighbouring countries. He said: “Maximum restraint must be shown otherwise the risk is that extremist groups take advantage of the situation and that would be extremely serious.”
The Foreign Office has warned against all but essential travel to Egypt apart from Red Sea resorts. Germany and the US advised their citizens not to travel to Egypt at all.